How do you deal with self-consciousness in public settings? As humans we are social beings who often strive to become a part of a community. The need to be social and make connections can make the appearance of being alone in public terrifying and off-putting.


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A few weeks ago I went to the movies by myself. Weird, right?

Now I know I am not the first person to go to the movies all by their lonesome.

According to journalist Jesse Singal in an article published on, going to the movies alone should not be considered taboo but be embraced for the social confidence that it can instill in solo moviegoers.

“Everyone has different internal guidelines for solo outings, and these guidelines are often marked by a fair degree of irrationality.”

Most people might end up at the theater alone to pass some time or maybe they were stood up.

Luckily for me, my case was not the latter. I went alone because I felt like going. It’s as simple as that.

I really wanted popcorn and I wanted to watch a movie. There was also the dominating factor that none of my friends could join me.

Did I enjoy the movie?

I sure did.

I was able to sit wherever I wanted, I did not have to talk to anyone, I did not have to share my popcorn and I had full access to both armrests of my seat.

Not to mention that the theater was practically abandoned. I was basically the fifth wheel to two couples sitting a few rows in front of me.

Did I see anybody I knew?

Thankfully I did not, because actually I still felt extremely uncomfortable for just about the entire time I was there.  

Let’s face it, going to the movies is just about one of the most unsocial things that you can do.

You sit in a dark room and be quiet so that everyone can enjoy the movie.

But why did I feel so uncomfortable doing something that really is not a very social activity?

It seems there is an overbearing social stigma built into our brains that if we are by ourselves people will think something is wrong with us.

This idea can be easily reversed. I have thought on multiple occasions that it is sad when somebody is eating by themselves at a restaurant.

Being alone in public is foreign to me, but it really should not be frowned upon.

Over the past few months I have been trying to do more things independently.

Simple things like going to the movies or eating at a restaurant.

In a way these activities have helped me to become more confident and self-sufficient.

I am not normally the outspoken one. I often wait for others to talk.

As silly as it seems, if I go by myself, I don’t allow myself to hide behind my friends during social outings.

Doing activities I enjoy by myself helps to create confidence out of initiative.

If I continue to push myself out of my comfort zone, my feelings of self-consciousness in public places will become less noticeable.

So should you go to the movies alone? I would say yes. There is no harm in treating yourself to a good movie and delicious popcorn.

By Sierra Thompson

Sierra Thompson is an editor for MBU Timeline. She is majoring in communication studies and minoring in business administration. Thompson is a member of the softball team at MBU. In her free time she loves to travel, watch movies and spend time with her family and friends.